Summer of 68

  Jack Carfrae

If the sources in our registration story are accurate – and we have every reason to believe they are – then Wednesday’s new car registration figures are likely to herald August as the best month of 2018.

It’s a similar trend to last year, when March became best month for new car sales on record, as registrations were dragged forward in advance of the then new VED regime. This is even bigger, though, as the scramble to dodge WLTP – which kicked in yesterday – has seen daily registration increases into four figures.

March 2017’s spike was the last hurrah before the new car market’s erosion began, although it’s worth remembering that, though fewer than their immediate predecessors, folk have still bought a lot of cars in 2017 and 2018.

The rest of the year is something of an abyss, especially September. In what we might think of as a normal year (remember those?) this month would typically be strong for new metal, as the plate change would bring an uplift in sales, but I get the feeling we’re not going to be able to say the same for the 68 plate.

In a sense, the new reg’ may have come at the right time, as September is going to need something to pick up the slack, but – and I’m speculating – I doubt it’s going to be enough for some buoyant SMMT figures next month.

Jack Carfrae

Acting editor

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